Ineptitude

Buddy and I went to a bitting clinic. It was really interesting to get a different perspective on things. Buddy was on high-alert for some reason. And wasn’t at his most co-operative. But we worked through that.

I showed her the video from our SJ round last week. That helped her get a sense of the issues we’ve been having with inconsistent contact. Then she watched us in action. She could see I’m trying to be consistent but he was too busy looking ‘outside the classroom’.

She said he was very fleshy lips and didn’t like too much tongue pressure.

All was going well, till she let me know that I had his bit in back to front and upside down. 🤦🏻‍♀️

Funnily, he went nicer in it when it was corrected. Honestly, I wish they came with instructions sometimes!

She likes him in it for SJ / XC but recommended a different bit for dressage. We tried a few before hitting on one that felt better. It was really interesting feeling his reaction to different bits.

It makes our achievements all the more special given my ineptitude with his bit.

Bog monster

Buddy fully embraced his Irish breeding with a well-deserved mud pack roll in the sunshine. Seems appropriate as it’s St Patrick’s Day.

He definitely earned it after a cracking jumping lesson this morning with Lewis from Neric Equestrian. The improvement on our last lesson was marked. So were the heights as ‘Whack ‘em up Palmer’ was on full form.

We were flying 1m+ jumps by the end. Put the biggest smile on my face. Even with an unscheduled dismount. When it’s good, my goodness it’s good!! Need to get out to a competition and put it all into practise.

Boing

My little boy was flying this afternoon. Mostly away from the hedge that clearly had monster in it. 🤦🏻‍♀️

He’s been in this school thousands of times, but every now and then he decides that the far end of the arena is deadly territory.

I’ve been reading a cracking book called ‘Horse Brain, Human Brain’. It’s really helping me get inside his head.

At least today, we jumped all the jumps. In the right order. With impulsion. And a little bit of style. I’ll take that!!

Deer deer

Another couple of firsts for Buddy today. Our first outing to Gunton Hall and his first experience of BIG deer!! And lots of them. There were several herd of Red and Fallow deer. The stags had huge antlers too. They really are magnificent creatures.

I have to admit, Buddy was amazing! He was a bit weirded out at times, but he soon settled. Very proud of him today. Even though there was lots for him to look at, he jumped lots of the bigger jumps there.

Stubble dreams

Oh how we’d love to go for a blast on the stubble. Buddy and I will have to keep dreaming though. We’re not allowed on these fields. I’m very grateful for the off-road hacking we have, so I wouldn’t want to break the rules. As tempting as this looks….

It’s definitely an equestrian thing. To look at a stubble field or a beach and think bring on the galloping….. 😝

Progression

Day 2 of camp and another brilliant day. In fact the whole camp was bloody brilliant! Yes, I’m a little overtired and emotional. Let’s just say we will both sleep well tonight.

Two brilliant lessons today. Out on the XC course this morning. Buddy was flying! He’s definitely got the hang of running and jumping. 👏🏻

We jumped 80s and 90s today. And a few we hadn’t jumped before. Got ‘save of the day’ too. I was not coming off. Especially in the water!!

This afternoon we finished with grids. I bloody love grids! So does Buddy it seems.

I’m over the moon with the progress we’ve made in the past few years. We’ve come a long way since our first camp.

It was also brilliant catching up with everyone. And meeting new people. Till the next time…

Numbers game

Day 1 of camp down and lots to report. Two brilliant lessons (poles this morning and course jumping this afternoon). One new saddle pad (it was on sale!!). And zero falls. Now that’s what I call a very good day.

Weather-wise it was a game of two halves. This morning was awful with heavy showers. This afternoon saw glorious sunshine.

Round 2 of Newmarket Salt therapy was good too. Buddy spent more time by the nozzle this time. He seems so chilled out with life today.

Fingers crossed he stays like that tomorrow when we head out to XC.

Shiny boy

Someone was looking super handsome after his bubble bath today. Admittedly he acted like I was drowning him during it. He does make me laugh. He hates having his face washed. Is that a gelding thing?! I’ve had several the same.

His mane looks so much better after a spot of Head & Shoulders. It really does the trick.